The Society of Chemical Manufacturers & Affiliates (SOCMA) recently released the findings of its inaugural industry census, which indicates specialty chemical companies remain bullish despite the uncertain landscape. As part of the association’s strategic focus on building commercial growth opportunities, SOCMA developed the “Specialty Chemicals Industry Census” in collaboration with Vault Consulting, LLC. The resulting data will be disseminated through SOCMA’s ChemSectors program, a tailored information network for analysis and trends impacting the value chain.

“Through the census, we captured demographic and operations data that not only points to sustained business confidence but also builds upon SOCMA’s industry intelligence repository, providing more clarity and insight than you would get from peer-to-peer discussions,” said Paul Hirsh, SOCMA’s senior vice president of Industry Development & Partnerships. “This data establishes key benchmarks that are critical to companies as they reassess their business plans and reevaluate outlooks for the remainder of 2020.”

Key findings of the 2020 SOCMA census include:

  • Approximately 93% of respondents expect an increase in revenue growth, and 83% expect an increase in capacity in the next three years
  • More than 67% have capital expansion plans in place
  • Markets driving revenue growth within the next three years include: performance materials (81%), agrochemical (49%), and API/excipients (47%)
  • Almost 35% of companies view sustainability in the context of business continuity
  • About 61.5% train employees in-house, with 38.6% using both in-house and external sources

“SOCMA continues to keep a pulse on industry trends in order to provide companies with essential data that is vital in successfully navigating the current economic and regulatory landscape,” said Jennifer Abril, SOCMA president and CEO. “Despite the pandemic and other crucial factors impacting the specialty and fine chemical sector in 2020, the SOCMA census reinforces the significance of the specialty chemicals industry to economic growth, both on the national and international stages.”

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